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MP3.com, EMI settle lawsuit with licensing deal

The companies settle a copyright infringement suit, allowing the online music company to resume distribution of songs owned by the record label.

MP3.com has settled a copyright infringement suit with a unit of EMI Group, allowing the online music company to resume distribution of songs owned by the record label.

In a joint statement released today, EMI said it has entered a nonexclusive, North American licensing agreement with MP3.com. Details regarding the licensing fees involved in the settlement were not disclosed

MP3.com has previously reached settlements with Time Warner's Music Group, with which EMI is merging, and Bertelsmann's BMG Entertainment to end online copyright disputes. The settlements come after a federal judge in April ruled that San Diego-based MP3.com is infringing on the record companies' copyrights through its My.MP3.com service.

"We want to do everything we can to satisfy the overwhelming consumer demand for access to their music in cyberspace," Robin Richards, president of MP3.com, said in a statement.

Two other "Big Five" labels--Universal Music Group and Sony Music Group--remain plaintiffs in the case.

Earlier this week, Universal agreed to license its music catalog to Musicbank, which plans to offer a service similar to My.MP3.com later this year. The service would allow people who buy CDs to listen to those songs online.